UN stops distribution of blended food in Uganda after recipients fall sick

Source: Xinhua| 2019-03-17 09:56:37|Editor: Xiaoxia
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KAMPALA, March 16 (Xinhua) -- UN World Food Program (WFP) on Saturday announced that it has stopped the distribution of blended food in Uganda after reports of recipients falling sick in the northeastern part of the country.

The food aid agency said in a statement that scores of recipients of Super Cereal, a fortified blended food, got sick and admitted to health centers in the semiarid region of Karamoja.

"As a precaution in case Super Cereal is linked to outbreaks of sickness, WFP is stopping distributing Super Cereal in all its operations in Uganda including in refugee settlements across the country and in its Maternal Child Health and Nutrition program in Karamoja," the statement said, adding the WFP "has treated this as a matter of extreme urgency."

The agency said over 90 cases, including 12 children under the age of five, were admitted with symptoms including confusion and high fever on Saturday in Napak district in Karamoja, a day after their families received the food aid. Other cases have also been registered in the region.

The statement said the government and the WFP are investigating and have submitted samples of Super Cereal for laboratory tests to determine whether there is a link between eating blended food and falling sick.

Super Cereal is provided by the WFP through 44 government health centers across Karamoja to pregnant or breastfeeding women, and children between 6 and 59 months as an attempt to offer adequate nurition.